Spokane school employees violate campaign laws

THURSDAY, FEB. 27, 2014, 2:28 P.M.

State fines 16 employees a total of $1,700

A state investigation showed Spokane Public Schools employees violated campaign laws by using public property to promote a school levy and assist in a board candidate’s campaign.

The Public Disclosure Commission found more than 100 instances where staff, faculty or administration used the district’s email and computers. The commission ruled 33 school district employees were in violation, mainly for using the district’s email and computers, and 16 employees have been fined a total of $1,700.

The violations stem from 2009, 2011 and 2012 elections involving bonds, levies and a school board candidate race.

“Use of facilities is probably the most common complaint the commission receives,” said Lori Anderson, a Public Disclosure Commission spokeswoman. “It’s uncommon to have this many people charged as part of one complaint.”

Spokane resident Laurie Rogers, who has been vigilant about holding the district accountable for public records violations, brought the complaint in 2011.

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